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cross-bar, and presses the planter down into the earth
Fig. 2. The record from three roots of potatoes. The competition Lancashire, produced considerable interest at the Leyland (near Preston) Agricultural and Horticultural Association, which met Oct. 26. 1841. There were four competitors for the prizes. The first was obtained for a basket containing 67} lb. of potatoes from only three roots of Kemp's Seedling: they were grown by Mr. Rose, jun. The second prize was taken by Mr. J. Lovett, jun., Leyland; his three roots produced 664 Ib. The third prize was given to Mr. J. Ashcroft, Leyland; his three roots produced 61 lb. The fourth was awarded to Mr. J. Leyland ; his three roots produced 60 lb. This Kemp's Seedling is a
most excellent po-
I have enclosed a sketch (fig. 3.) of an improved potato-planter. The improvement is this. It is made of tin. On the top there is a pan for holding the
potato sets. The part a
first makes the place Fig. 3. Saul's Potato. Planting Machine.
where the seeds are to go into; the machine is then raised by the bandle (), and moved forward so that the tube (c) may come over the place made by a. The seed is then put into the tube at d, which conducts it to the place made for it by a. By this method there is no stooping, because the sets are in the top of the planter ready to be put into the conducting tube (c). You will see at once the object of my improvement; and you may say it is strange that this improvement should not have been made long ago. The part e is for the foot to press the planter into the earth, as before described.
Fig. 4. shows the planting-machine in use. Fort Green Cottage, Garstang, July, 1842.
[We expect to be able to give another article by Mr. Saul, on the culture of the potato, in our next Number.]
Art. I. General Notices. DESTROYING Wasps. This year tried, and succeeded wonderfully, in destroying the queens. They are well known by every naturalist to be the only breeders. The method I adopted is the old simple one of hanging bottles partially filled with sweetened water against the walls, in the spring of the year, about the time when peaches, apricots, &c., are in bloom ; before food for those noxious insects becomes plentiful, and while they are glad to seek out any thing in the shape of sustenance. The water in the bottles, while fermenting, attracts them ; and, on their going in to drink, they are almost in every instance destroyed. By the above-mentioned means I killed between 200 and 300 queen wasps, thereby causing a great diminution in the number of nests this summer. While other people have had upwards of one hundred wasps' nests to destroy, I have not had more than a dozen, although situated in the midst of plantations where they might, alınost undisturbed, increase to an alarming extent. — John Armstrong. Belmont, near Durham.
Clématis azùrea grandiflora must rank as the queen of hardy climbing plants. It is a rampant grower ; its hardiness is indisputable; its large starlike flowers are matchlessly showy, and so suitable is our climate to its growth, that this year my plant, which climbs an Irish yew, has produced perfect seed. Clématis Sieboldi is entitled to be the fairy queen of the same class of climbers, from its slender growth and delightfully beautiful flowers. — Richard Tongue. Forton Cottage, near Lancaster, Oct. 2. 1842.
Art. II. Foreign Notices.
NORTH AMERICA. SHEPHERDIA argentea Nutt. – Some of our readers will recollect that this was recommended as a fruit tree by Mr. Russell in our Volume for 1831, p. 570. Desirous of knowing how far the tree was maintaining its reputation as a fruit tree, we wrote to Messrs. Winship, nurserymen at Brighton near Boston, U. S., who were said by Mr. Russell to be the only cultivators of the tree in 1831, and the following is an extract from their answer :
“We are glad you are about to notice a plant which has always been held in the highest estimation by ourselves, as one of the most beautiful, ornamental, and useful fruit-bearing productions in nature. The Shepherdia argéntea, or buffalo-berry tree, in our nursery, which was 14 ft. high in 1831, is now 20 ft. high, 29 in. girt at 2 ft. from the ground, and its branches cover a space 28 ft. in diameter ; that is, 14 ft. on each side of the main stock. It is a female plant, and requires the proximity of the male plant ; but the distance is immaterial while the pollen can be communicated by the wind, or conveyed by a peculiar insect, in appearance like the common bee, but only about one quarter the size. It will not mature fruit without the male. The cultivation of it has been extensive. We have disposed of 20,000 plants, and as fast as the male and female characters of the plants could be ascertained by the blossom buds. The tree is propagated by layering or by seeds; lately, altogether by seeds. We have recently sold them at 50 cents per plant, formerly much higher. We have not sent any to Europe, but should be disposed to sell a thousand, or thousands, to any person you might recommend, to sell upon equal shares, and receive our payment in nursery plants from England : that is, one half of the amount of sales to our credit, to meet our orders as for the amount above stated. Unfortunately we cannot send any fruit this season : we did not take our usual precaution of covering the tree with a net, and those little warblers and depredators, the birds, had taken all the fruit prior to our reception of your favour. Another year, if you desire it, we will send you specimen clusters of the fruit in any way you may prescribe.
"We enclose two sprigs of the Shepherdia, male and female: the large flowering buds are those of the male, the small ones of the female. The fruit is of the size of the red currant; a brighter red, richer, and more nutritious. It is a fine eating fruit after the frost has operated upon it. It is also a very superior fruit for jellies, jams, &c. Picture to your imagination a tree containing a mass of fruit, the little specimen twig enclosed producing a cluster of 1} in. in diameter, close and compact, even to hardness ; fancy a large tree thus loaded, every branch and twig, with a bright and shining fruit, and you may form some idea of this unsurpassed and beautiful production from the American Rocky Mountains, discovered, as you must be aware, by that excellent man Nuttall, and named after his intimate friend Mr. Shepherd, formerly curator of the Liverpool Botanic Garden.
“We shall be much gratified to hear from you frequently, and by the Liverpool line of steamers for Boston, directed Messrs. J. and F. Winship, Brighton, Mass., U. S. A.” — J. and F. Winship. Oct. 1. 1842.
[The specimens sent were of Elæágnus argentea Pursh, Arb. Brit. and Hort. Soc. Garden ; and it would therefore appear that the Hippophae argentea is not a synonyme to Shepherdia argéntea. Some plants of each sex of the Shepherdia have been ordered by Messrs. Whitley and Osborne of the Fulham Nursery.]
ART. III. Retrospective Criticism. TRANSPLANTING large Trees. (p. 387.)— I was much pleased with your opinion on transplanting large trees without any previous preparation of their roots, given in the August Nuniber of the Gardener's Magazine, p. 387., by thinning out their tops at the time of transplanting, which is perfectly correct, according to my practice. I have been obliged, upon the spur of the moment, and no doubt many other gardeners have been so obliged, to remove trees that had received no previous root-pruning, preparation; and I have seldom failed, when a due proportion of the branches and young spray has been cut out at the time of transplanting. The general quantity removed has been one half or more of the head of the tree. This is done, not by cutting out large limbs and mutilating the tree, but by a careful and regular thinning of the whole head, much in the same way as in thinning and pruning standard apple trees, so as to leave the general outline of the tree the same as it was before pruning; in fact, at a distance, the head looks better and more regular than it did before the operation. I am further convinced, although not by actual expe, rience upon similarly prepared trees, that, had the trees at Allanton been pruned in the above manner at the time of their removal, their effect upon the scenery would not have been deteriorated, whilst their larger and healthier foliage in immediate as well as after years would have been more pleasing, and left no cause for the observations in Strictures on Steuart's Planter's Guide, quoted in the Gardener's Magazine, vol. vi. p. 91.
There are many fine old ornamental trees to be found in parks, &c., apparently verging to decay, which might be renovated, at least for a few years, were their tops regularly thinned out so as to throw fresh vigour into the remaining branches ; and, in those districts where faggots are in request, the prunings would pay the expenses. Trees in demesnes by the sides of public roads are soinetimes to be seen in want of this kind of pruning, in consequence of much of the rain that falls, and which ought to go to their roots, being carried off without penetrating the soil
. Young trees from the nurseries are also much benefited by ning at the time of planting; not by removing a certain quantity of the lower branches and leaving those near the top untouched, but by a regular thinning out of a portion of branches all over the plant, and shortening some of the more straggling shoots of those left, particularly two or three of the stronger shoots near the top, in some kinds of trees, which seem to contend with the leading shoot for leadership. The lower branches should only be gradually removed in after years, as the trees advance in growth. By keeping the heads regularly thinned, the trees, while in a young state, are less exposed to be tossed about with the wind, than if they were only to have their lower branches cut off, giving them much the appearance of long birch brooms, with their handles stuck in the ground. (See some of the young trees in Hyde Park, between Knightsbridge and Kensington.) Were the young plantations partitioned off in Hyde Park, it would be an excellent plan to give the different methods of pruning a trial, by pruning each partition in a different manner; and, from observation in that public situation, the most successful methods would soon be introduced throughout the country. The above remarks do not apply to the fir tribe ; they do not seem to be benefited by pruning; and branches once removed from them never push out again, while the hard-wooded deciduous trees do again push out shoots in abundance where smaller branches have been removed. -E.B. Oct. 24. 1842.
Comfortable Habitations for the Poor with Gardens attached. (Vol. for 1842, p. 637. to 642.)-I entertain the hope that the nobility and gentry will become alive to this important subject, and numbers of them are so already. But many small capitalists in country places find a profitable investment for their little moneys in buying old stables, and outhouses of various kinds, and converting them into human habitations. A large old cottage, originally adapted for one family, will be divided into three or four tenements, with scarcely any garden ground to each. For these, the allotment system of the Labourer's Friend Society seems to be especially adapted. However, nothing can compensate the moral evils resulting from crowding families together; and men, finding their houses uncomfortable and no garden employment for their spare time, resort to the beer-house and the publichouse, and are thereby debased and degraded, and, in fact, ruined. I know of no remedy for this, but by the nobles and gentlemen of England having such comfortable cottages as you design and recommend erected for the use of all young and newly married people. — T. M. Reigate, Dec. 16. 1842.
Art. I. On Horticultural Exhibitions. By James Barnes,
Gardener to the Right Hon. Lady Rolle. Having all my life been engaged in gardening, and having been anxious to see the skill and industry of gardeners rewarded, I have carefully watched for many years the effect of the encouragement given at horticultural exhibitions to working gardeners. If the conclusions that I have come to differ from those arrived at by some of my brethren, I trust the circumstance will not be attributed to any partiality on my part, but rather to a want of more extended observation and experience.
The general impression on my mind is, that, under the present system of exhibiting, it very rarely occurs that either skill or industry gets properly rewarded.
For instance, at our principal leading exhibitions, encouragement is held out for the production of certain articles, no matter what may be their native country, the part of England they come from, who may exhibit them, or how long they may have been in the possession of the exhibitor, provided only he has had them long enough to make them his property. For this purpose, it will be sufficient if they have been purchased the very morning of the exhibition ; and I can state with confidence, that some of the leading exhibitors of the present time never think of growing the productions they exhibit, but scour the country over in search of them, to the no small satisfaction of the nurserymen from whom they are purchased. Whether this shows a taste for horticulture, or a taste for exhibiting, I leave others to determine. What chance has a gardener who grows his plants from their infancy with exhibitors of this kind, who can show, at every exhibition, a dozen of plants for his one or two? A number of respectable men get chosen as judges for such exhibitions, who very often are totally incapable of estimating the merit of the articles for want of practical knowledge. Horticultural exhibitions have, no doubt, done good by stimulating to exertion, but, for some 3d Ser.